Dance Mogul: What was it like to perform at the Super Bowl this year?
Alexandria: Did that really just happen!? Performing at the Super Bowl was one of the most surreal exhilarating experiences I’ve ever had. It was like the best roller coaster ride you’ve ever been on and never want to end. Gaga had the most powerful performance singing her heart out all by herself inspiring nothing but love and acceptance and true artistry throughout her performance. This particular performance, however, was very personal for me. I got to work with people who greatly influenced my career and I’m lucky to call my close friends. I was hand picked by Richard Jackson a very dear mentor of mine whom I’ve worked with for 10 years throughout my career as a professional dancer and artist. Sharing the stage with such a creative genius who always believed in me had me fighting tears just knowing how hard he worked to get there. It was one of the greatest highlights in my career and I’m incredibly honored he chose me to be a part of this year’s iconic Super Bowl halftime show.
Dance Mogul: What did it take to prepare and execute on such a large scale?
Alexandria: The preparation began months before I even stepped foot in the door on that first day of rehearsal. Eighteen females and forty dancers total were all carefully selected for each section of the routine to fit the vision Richard had. He brought a team together that was there along with him and Gaga’s journey who he knew would all shine on that stage with her. As a dancer coming in, rehearsals were set for over a month of 8 hour days, sometimes longer being on call and having to commit to all times and changes at any moment. Learning choreography and adapting to different elements from the rehearsal space to the mock stage to adding costumes and quick changes, to practicing on the main stage was a fun yet challenging process. We had to be highly alert with all the pyro and effects happening during the show as well. We rehearsed the number several times running on the stage with only 6 minutes to prepare for the performance and 6 minutes to exit. The physical demand was high and as expected.
We met the challenge head-on with no excuses. We truly are athletes and sometimes get overlooked in that sense. Everyone had to take care of their bodies. Outside of rehearsals as a fitness entrepreneur and enthusiast when my body required rehabilitation I personally would add yoga and strength training to be as prepared as possible for the job at hand.
Dance Mogul: As a performer how do take a performance such as this and use it to empower and further your career?
Alexandria: Humbly speaking I’m so fortunate to have the success I’ve had as a professional dancer. I’ve worked with the best choreographers, artists and creative directors in the business and will always continue to be a student. I believe one should always use their success to pay it forward and whenever I’m not on a job I do my best to do just that! I teach locally at dance and fitness studios as well as volunteer at public schools trying to preserve the arts which is always the first to go due to budget cuts. I also am a contributor to “The girl fund,” a charity organization through imagine1day that helps build schools in Ethiopia and specifically focuses on tearing down the barriers from women getting their education. I put on local events teaching “Stiletto fit,” a class I created promoting women empowerment that brings like-minded community-oriented businesses together offering fitness and dance workshops. I found a need for women to have an outlet through fitness and dance to build their confidence in their bodies and inspire healthy and positive lifestyles. I enjoy being able to share the knowledge I gained as a performer in this industry.
Alexandria: From the time I started dancing on a professional level I never could have imagined I’d be performing in front of millions of people during one of the largest viewed events in our country with such a gifted artist. I always watched the super bowl only for the halftime show and just thought to myself how cool it would be to be a part of something like that. I think I’m still in shock I actually just had one of the hugest performances of my life. Reaching a platform like the Super Bowl was a dream come true. Of all the artists I could have performed with Lady Gaga and her team made this year’s halftime show an unforgettable one!
Dance Mogul: What advice do you have for younger dancers in terms of work ethic to build them up for these types of opportunities?
Alexandria: I would tell younger dancers in terms of work ethic to be versatile in their training in all styles of their craft and to stay disciplined. It’s important to keep a positive outlook and never get discouraged that you’re not good enough in this industry. I believe dancers have the thickest skin because we get critiqued and judged nonstop from the moment we step foot in the room. Auditions can really break an individual down if they’re not focused on their end goal. You’re not going to always be the right height, have the right look or be chosen for a particular job for several reasons even out of your control. Being educated and consistent with your training from qualified and respected teachers learning from those who came before with the experience to back them should be highly considered. If you want to be the best you have to learn from the best and always be knowledgeable of the choreographers’ background and artist you are about to audition for. Also, take care of your body, it is your instrument and the only one you have. From eating healthy to maintaining your physique on and off stage has always been a huge part of my success. You have to be ready when you get that call at any moment so always look the part and remain professional just like any other job.
Dance Mogul: What’s next for you in 2017?
Alexandria: Working in the industry you have to be ready for anything so I never limit myself to what is ahead. I do have some exciting things coming up like the NBA All-Star game in New Orleans which is always a fun show to be a part of. I can only share so much but I will be going on tour singing again with an artist who hasn’t announced it yet all over the US and Europe so I’m definitely looking forward to that. I also am working on some personal projects hoping to take a new venture of mine I’ve created with a fellow dancer Ferly Prado called “Team 3XT,” to another level. This program inspired by my entertainment background will continue to empower other women with online instructional dance and fitness videos along with nutritional guidance to increase their body awareness and show how dancing can really be a positive influence to a healthier lifestyle. I’d love to keep you posted on all my upcoming adventures so feel free to check my social media @missalexkaye on Instagram so I can continue sharing what 2017 has in store.
Dance Mogul: Is there anyone you would like to thank for helping you on your journey thus far?
Alexandria: There’s quite a few I have to thank that have been a huge part of my journey. To name a few though I have to begin with Madonna Grimes and Andre Fuentes who both believed in me at the start of my career and are no longer with us. Madonna was one of the first to train me as a commercial dancer and hired me on my first tour with Denise Williams. Andre Fuentes gave an unknown dancer a chance in a Britney Spears audition one day and the rest was history. They always supported me and were true masters in their craft. I will forever be grateful for how much they influenced me in my career. I have to most importantly thank from the bottom of my heart Richard Jackson and Lady Gaga for trusting him because I wouldn’t have been given this opportunity if it wasn’t for them. If you know Richy he’s always yelling “perform,” which is what he always expected of me, to never try to be anyone else but me on any stage I stepped foot on. There are several others I’ve crossed paths with along my journey who have left their mark and I’ll personally thank them as I’m not going anywhere anytime soon.